Friday, June 3, 2011

Infiltrator: reflecting and rethinking.

So, I started infiltrator back in March. It was destined to be an Ogre3D project in the style of Hovertank3D and Descent. Time passed, and things changed. I ended up dumping Ogre3D to stick with my Irrlicht based Ray3D engine. I threw away the non-vertical movement thing to go for a pure Descent style game. Then I showed a little progress for awhile, before updates for Infiltrator disappeared for over a month.

That was before, but now it's now, which isn't before. The sky is also a blueish color, not all goldfish are really gold colored, if you feed a baby goat rotten eggs it will barf pure uranium on you, and a handful of other obvious things.


Anyway, where was Infiltrator in that time? Did I forget and abandon it? What was that you heard about physics integration? What effect is this having on my time budget? Such questions as these which some of you surely have are the reason for this post.

So, why there were there no updates? Simple: Infiltrator wasn't progressing. There were two reasons for this. The first reason was that I started having boatload sized school chunks leaving very little time to spend on Infiltrator. This hasn't really worn off yet, and isn't likely to subside for awhile, so I'll have to get used to squeezing what little time I can in on weekends and such.

The other reason was that I had a really clever and sneaky programming problem. I decided to integrate physics using IrrBullet, which was apparently one of those things... You know, the kind where everyone gets it working using a totally different solution unique to their setup, and very few people have the same set of nightmare inducing problems. Yes, nightmare inducing, literally. But that's for another post. It took me awhile to make it work okay?

I will admit, that really killed my initial plan for a 250 hour time budget. Integrating physics alone probably took about fifty hours right off the top. That would put me at 78 hours, and I'm just getting started building the base for the game. I admit, a lot of that time went to wasted Ogre3D work and that physics integration fiasco, but part of that just goes to show that this is a way bigger project than I had originally thought or even planned.

All of these things led me to start rethinking Infiltrator. I will reassign a time budget, which will start at zero even though I already have some work done. I'm also rethinking the scope of the game. Things like whether or not I will take it to the point of integrating composite effects into Ray3D, how many levels I want and how complex they will be, whether or not I will be replacing some enemies with higher detailed ones, etc.

I'll get back with Infiltrator Season 2 part 1 once I have a little more to show. All I have right now is a really simple rigid body demo for the barebones physics integration I have. Once I channel this into the game and apply it usefully, or decide I don't need it and go on without physics, I will be ready to show some of the work.

Anyway, happy don't trip over a rotten onion and fall down the stairs ending up breaking your face on your neighbors autographed $5300 electric bass day.


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